Reflecting the priority subjects mentioned by the Member States at the call for interest of July 2016, this first MLE on Open Science will address the national policies and practices relating to the following two issues: (1) Altmetrics, understood as alternative (i.e. non-traditional) metrics that cover not just citation of articles but also various forms of social media shares, web-downloads or any other measure of the qualities and impact of research outcomes; and (2) Incentives and rewards for researchers to engage in Open Science activities.
Small fixes are not enough to reach Open Science’s full potential. Systemic and comprehensive change in science governance and evaluation is needed across the EU and beyond. This article summarises the work and the key lessons learned during a Mutual Learning Excersise on Open Science, carried out under the Horizon 2020 Policy Support Facility (PSF).
Presentation - Key conclusions from the MLE on Open Science
This report builds on the exchange of experiences and mutual learning of 13 countries: Armenia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, France, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Portugal, Slovenia, Sweden and Switzerland. It provides an overview of various challenges of Open Science implementation across Europe as discussed throughout several meetings in 2017.
This report proposes a National Roadmap for the Implementation of Open Science, listing the steps involved in the transition to a national research governance policy that is supportive of Open Science activities. The report outlines key priorities and principles underpinning the implementation of Open Science at the national level, reviews existing experiences in developing and supporting Open Science activities and related policies, and summarises the strategies, lessons learnt and models proposed to date.
This report provides a systematic overview of the advantages and challenges of supporting Open Science activities, and the incentives and rewards that most effectively encourage the adoption and implementation of Open Science policies.
Altmetrics have the opportunity to promote Open Science by broadening our understanding of impact, thus reflecting the need to update standards and motivate researchers to focus on quality, not quantity of research.
Altmetrics data are mainly gathered from readily available online sources, making altmetrics highly relevant in the context of Open Science.
The limitations of current mainstream research metrics — and the need to develop and promote alternatives, in order to better measure the impact of research, allocate funding and reward researchers — were discussed at the kick-off meeting for the MLE on Open Science. It was emphasised that metrics and incentives need to take into account impacts on society, not just the progress of science, and should encourage researchers to promote and use Open Science resources and approaches. The kick-off meeting also discussed the “Modus Operandi” of the project, which will lead to an agreement on the workplan, scope and expected outcomes.
What are the benefits and challenges of the different types of altmetrics used in the EU today? The meeting discussed these as well as existing practices, and instruments used, in the countries participating in the MLE on Open Science. In addition, discussions covered what types of impacts are important for different stakeholders in the participating countries and whether altmetrics could contribute to their measurement.
The participants discussed ‘how to engage with altmetrics in the context of Open Science’, followed by a brief presentation of the main findings of the report recently released by the EC's Expert Group on ‘next-generation metrics’. In addition, participating countries had the opportunity to learn from the experiences of Finnish actors in the field, including the Finnish Ministry of Education's commitment and approach to Open Science and some success stories linked to the Open Science initiative. Finally, Finnish universities shared their experience in using altmetrics.
This two-day learning exercise focused on the incentives and rewards that can persuade research and innovation (R&I) actors to engage with Open Science and embrace its benefits. The development and implementation of specific incentives and rewards for Open Science practices depends on the stakeholders involved as well as the field, community and location in question. Discussions focused on this diversity of approaches and contexts as well on the obstacles and practicalities in relation to such incentives. The experience of Croatian stakeholders was also discussed by representatives of R&I stakeholders such as the Croatian Ministry of Science and Education, the National Council for Science, Higher Education and Technology, the Croatian Science Foundation and representatives from Croatian universities and research institutes.
In this final country visit of the MLE, participants met stakeholders from Switzerland to discuss and exchange experience. The mission focused on developing and implementing policies and actions to incentivise researchers and institutions to engage with Open Science. Participants also discussed common Open Science principles, guidelines and requirements regarding the roles, responsibilities and entitlements of researchers, their employers and funders.
The purpose of the final meeting of the MLE was to discuss the final report, which summarises the findings and provides good practices and role models, the obstacles and hindrances, the perspectives of the EU Member States regarding Open Science, and recommendations for change. In addition, the participants discussed the progress made in their countries regarding the adoption of Open Science since the start of the MLE, and how the MLE might contribute to this and facilitate change. Finally, the methods and opportunities for dissemination of the lessons learned and the messages conveyed by the final report, as well as the needs for follow-up were discussed.
Open Science covers not just open access, but everything from the sharing of research data to the growth of citizen science – and it paves the way for new metrics, incentives and rewards for research. This final conference will explore synergies between the good practices and lessons learned during the MLE on Open Science, and relevant developments in Belgian Open Science policies. Debates will especially focus on the needs of researchers working in an Open Science environment – covering appropriate skills, incentives and rewards.